Salter Builders Ltd

Choosing the Right Section for You

Key Considerations when Buying a Section


When buying a section there are some key considerations to keep in mind.  Do you have your own ‘grand design’ in mind?  Are you thinking of taking the next step and buying a section to build it on?

Sections generally are one of three types; flat, hillside or lifestyle.  We will discuss each of the different section types to help you avoid some of the regular pitfalls when buying a section.


Flat sections are normally the easiest and cheapest to build on but in today’s market if they are also in a new subdivision, the size can be quite small and at the same time very expensive depending on their location in relation to schools, shops etc.   What are your requirements?  Do you have a boat, caravan, motor home etc – you need to be sure there will be enough room to cater for any additional recreational vehicles and assets on the smaller, flat sections.


Hillside sections on paper are generally bigger, but their usability outside the proposed building footprint can sometimes be difficult. Depending on their location most will cost less than a flat section unless the location and view are highly sought after,  in which case the price can be very high.

Building on a hillside will add a lot more to the cost and will also depend on if the section is above or below the road access.  Building below the road access is harder than above as it is more difficult to get machinery and materials on site.  This will increase the overall cost.

A common trend is for hillside sections to change ownership several times before a house is finally built due to people underestimating the true cost of building on a hill.


Lifestyle sections can come in any number of shapes and sizes and will normally be cheaper and bigger the further they are away from a city centre.

Build costs will be similar to the above with a few extras to take into account.  You will need your own water supply and waste water treatment that at today’s pricing will cost approximately $30,000 to $40,000.  Power supply and fencing will also add to this.

Generally, even after all this outlay you will end up with a total land plus build cost about the same as building in town with the benefit of a lot more land and better privacy.

You will see that each type of section has its advantages and disadvantages, the most important factor is that you buy a section that actually fits your lifestyle and requirements.

If you would like to arrange a site visit with a builder who can give you some expert tips, help you avoid some common pitfalls and aid you in creating what it is you truly desire – contact us today.

We have written a Guide for you detailing how you can avoid many of the pitfalls during the earliest part of the build process.   You can access this here :   Salter Builders Guide

Trevor Salter
Licensed Building Practitioner
Registered Master Builder
Phone :  NZ (0064) 021 229 6222

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